Saturday, March 21, 2009

Bashford's Hot Springs Weekend

We managed to pull off one last weekend ride before returning to the reality of working again. I contacted the "Airmail" editor and let him know we were going over to Bashfords Hotsprings. Located along the Salton Sea in California. A friend, "Scotty" from AZ. (formerly of CA.) gave us a call and wanted to ride over with us. My neighbor "Dan", who rides my old Honda, came along also.
We headed out on Friday afternoon and had a leisurely ride over to the hot springs. We took the Interstate into CA. then peeled off on secondary roads which took us through the Glamis Sand Dunes area.

We stopped at Glamis for a quick refreshment and a break. They charge $2.00 to take a piss at this place. Scotty told them to stick it when they told him that. We saw a lot of pretty wild looking sand rails running around the dunes.

We hit our camp site fairly early and set up. They have a nice little area set up for tenting. They have 6 concrete hot tubs, a spa and a swimming pool at this place.
I cooked up dinner for everyone the first night. Another buddy, "Reid" showed up at about sunset and joined us for the night. Theyprovide a couple different fire rings and a lot of scrap lumber to burn so we had a nice fire each night.

We ran over to Borrego Springs on Sat. morning and met up with a dozen or so other folks for lunch. Had a great visit and ride over. The ride over was about 80 -90 miles. Beautiful desert country going over. One stretch of road was very rough and tried to rattle our bike apart. My charging light started acting up after that section of road.

Some fellow with a lot of money has positioned dozens of these steel sculptures around the desert outside of Borrego Springs. This is just one of the pieces. There are African animals, dinosaurs and numerous other pieces. This one had a road to it, most are just scattered around the desert. Scotty doesn't appear to concerned that the bird might drop one on him.

Alex showed up Sat. afternoon and stated for the night. Taking over for Reid, who took off for San Diego. Sunday AM we headed over to Bombay Beach to the American Legion for breakfast.

We stopped at the Glamis Dunes again, just in time to watch this gal dump her ATV over on it's side. No harm done, they flipped it back over and away they went again. A pretty fast weekend, but a great way to end our winter here, off to Texas soon. We'll run to Billings, back to Yuma, then off to Texas again for a few months.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Arizona Side Car Tour Day 5

Leaving Ajo we unfortunately only had a short jaunt home. North of Ajo there are miles and miles of Air Force Gunnery Range. Saw a derelict jet airplane sitting out in the desert. Must have been a target or something. This area is closed off to the public. We arrived at the final Border Patrol Checkpoint heading north. We passed numerous ones throughout the trip. The Agents kind of look you over and make a quick decision if you look guilty of something. Most of them have Drug Dogs sniffing around too. Didn't see a dog at this one.
After fueling in Gila Bend we had 50 miles of Freeway to run. Then jumped on a Frontage Road for the final 50 miles. Took a little break after getting off the freeway.

Came upon this lovely piece of property. This guy appears to have a life time collection of derelict stuff laying around. This is only a small portion of what he had laying around. One mans treasure is another mans junk I guess. (I should talk!)

Finally to Lagurta and only a few miles from home. The last 5 miles were freeway to our exit. We were ready to go for another 2 or 3 days. Contemplated getting clean clothes and continuing into CA. Unfortunately I had a bunch of BMW Parts to ship out so had to be home for a few days.
We're planning a camping trip to the Salton Sea this weekend so that will be our last hoorah for the winter it looks like.
I'll do a little post of our Salton Sea Camping run next week.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Arizona Side Car Tour Day 4

Thursday morning in Bisbee AZ. I got rolling a little early and did a valve adjustment on the BMW. Only one valve was a little tight. I detected a little power loss the day before. The carbs are jetted for lower elevations so I wasn't sure if it was an elevation issue or not. Bike ran fine anyway. We left the motel around 9:00 am and headed towards Tombstone AZ. The ride around Bisbee gave us a good look at the mining in the past. Bisbee is a lot like Jerome as it is built on a hill side and has winding litle streets.
We ran the 30 miles or so over to Tombstone and did a quick once aroung town thing without stopping. They've blocked off a couple of blocks and covered the asphalt streets with dirt for the benefit of the tourists I imagine. Darian got a quick photo of the south end of a team of horses pulling a coach around. Loooked like they must pay people to wander around town in old west clothing too. A little too much of a tourist trap for me.

We ran quite a few miles and stopped for lunch at a little town called Sonoita. Had a nice rest and had a great lunch. Nice people in the cafe. We then headed for Patagonia AZ. I stopped for a little bottle of warm-me -up at the local market.

Just outside of Patagonia we stopped at thid little shrine I had visited a few weeks ago on my way through. Spent a few minutes here and then headed out for Nogalas AZ. Nogalas was a run through and we just kept on trucking as Ajo was the goal for today and it was quite a few miles to go. We had about three raindrops around Nogalas which was the extent of rain for the whole trip. We had to run on the freeway for a few miles before coming to Arivaca Junction. This is a tiny, narrow, windy little road which wanders along creek bottoms for 80 miles or so. It was a fantastic ride although a bit slow. Some areas posted at 15 miles per hour.
This was the cafe entrance at Arivaca Junction. Pretty cool.

In Arivaca I saw this sight. The home owner must sit in the old car seat and just throw his empty beer cans on the drive way. Then as he comes and goes he mashes them down. Who said a person needs a stinking can crusher! Looks like he has been real busy.

This is on the Arivaca cut off road. This is Baboquivari Peak, which is at about 7800 feet. Kitt Peak is just over the horizon beyond this mountain. Ahead at a junction we turned north and towards Tucson and Robles Junction. South would have taken us into Mexico.

Another long stretch of Indian Reservation, the Tohono O'odham Indian Reservation, before getting to Ajo. Lots of Segaro's in this country. Looks like the windmill had a little too much wind at some point. This section of road seems to go on forever, with little run down towns along the way.

We finally ran out of day light approaching Ajo. We hit Ajo in the dark and stopped at the first motel we came to. This place was a real dump, clean but an old place nontheless. The next morning we saw two better looking motels just up the street. Oh well, probably saved us a couple of bucks. Covered a lot of country and miles today. Lovin it!

Arizona Side Car Tour Day 3

Leaving Phoenix mid morning we ran east towards Globe/Miami AZ. Decidied to run my tank down as low as possible to see what my fuel capacity really is. We were running down Hiway 60 through Phoenix. I went on to reserve #1 and ran out after a few miles so decided we'd better fuel up. Ended up taking 7 gallons so I figure this tank holds around 7.5 gallons. I really thought it was an 8.5 gallon tank but obviously not! The skys were gray today but the temperatures were perfect for riding. 60's to 70's.
Approaching Globe/Miami we came upon numerous great rock formations and a bit of road construction. Only held us up for a few minutes. We stopped for a "quick" lunch at a fast food joint and ended up being there for over an hour. So much for "fast" food. Oh well, we weren't in any hurry anyway.

Leaving Miami we headed into Apache Indian Reservation Country over to Safford AZ. Many, many miles of beautiful, remote country. The reservation is huge and there are miles of open country with nothing but high desert. A very nice ride.

Our goal for the day was Bisbee AZ. and i took a short cut which saved us about 30 miles. The road was quite rough and had to keep the speed down to around 45 to 50 to keep the bike from shaking apart. This was a nice area also. Lots of grass growing but all was pretty dry. We hit a dump motel in Bisbee for the night. Not really a dump but it was a "Suite" as they call it. more like an apartment with no kitchen utinsels what so ever. Good thing we weren't into cooking tonight. No restaurants within 5 miles so we just pigged out on junk food tonight and plan on a big breakfast for tomorrow morning. Got stopped right as it got dark out. Another great day!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Arizona Side Car Tour Day 2

Leaving Prescott AZ. we continued north and then east over to Jerome AZ. This photo was just above Jerome at a little view point. The roads were excellent bike roads and traffic was moderate. Very beautiful country here and numerous different rock formations were at every turn.

We stopped at a little cafe for breakfast in Jerome. A couple on a rented BMW Oilhead from New Hampshire stopped to visit and borrowed a wrench to tighten their bar mounted GPS System. They were on a family visit to the Phoenix area and rented the bike for a few days. Jerome is perched high on a cliff face with the houses stacked one on top of the other. A lot of old mining sites were along the road. The town is now somewhat of a artists town with lots of antique and art stores.

This view is heading down the mountain away from town. The main highway winds through all the little narrow streets through town. We headed west from there through Cottonwood and to Camp Verde. This road then led us into the higher country north of Payson AZ.
We ran many miles on top of a plateau where the weather was still a little like winter. Lots of snow up here. The temperature dropped down into the 50's and 60's but we were just fine with the gear we were wearing.
I believe this was Pine AZ. North of Payson AZ. The roads were no heading down in elevation out of the snow country. Recent snow was evident by the looks of all the grass being pressed down to the ground. This area reminded us alot of Montana and Wyoming.
Payson was the next stop. This brought us about 100 miles or so north of Phoenix. We found out that our youngest daughter, Treena, was going to be in Phoenix this night so making it to Phoenix was our goal of the day.
The hundred miles from Payson to Phoenix is a divided roadway and covers a lot of high desert country. Up and down the mountains while continually dropping in elevation until you hit Phoenix. We had no decent city maps but managed to find our way to Treenas' motel without any problems. A nice hot. hot tub awaited us upon arrival. We had a great dinner at the local Sheraton Hotel in the evening. Another great day!

Arizona Sidecar Tour Day 1

1 st. stop out was in Quartzsite for a quick bite to eat. The day started out great with minimal winds and nice 70 degree temps. We were heading into Prescott AZ. to visit with some friends.

This is just outside Congress AZ. and we were climbing up quickly in elevation. We gained 4000 feet in a few miles and traveled over a large plateau towards Prescott. The weather cooled a bit but was perfect riding weather without the sun beating down on us.
We were ready for a break so hit a little watering hole about 25 miles out of Prescott. Took a 1/2 hour break and then headed up the switch backs to Prescott. The road is a 35 mph ride with lots of turns. Great hack road. We climbed up another 1500 feet or so into the town.

There are a series of little lakes around Prescott. This one is just down the street from out friends place. I got lost with my directions and we took a long tour of town before I got myself squared away and heading the right way. Prescott has grown a lot since we've been there so didn't recognize a lot of the area. Found our way to our friends place and had a great relaxing evening. Today we covered a relaxing 250 miles or so.

Gila Mtns.

Gila Mtns.